Die-hard Star Trek fans might want to temper their excitement a little, as it is highly unlikely that the final product will bear too great a resemblance to the scanner seen on the big screen. Nonetheless the devices being developed could represent a significant technological advancement in the diagnostic domain.
Qualcomm is offering a US$10 million prize purse in the hope of stimulating the research and development of precision diagnostic equipment, seen by many as essential in a world where healthcare systems are often strained to breaking point. In order to win the prize, the successful scanner must comply with an ambitious set of parameters. First, the device must be able to reliably capture an individual's heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure, and oxygen saturation in an easy to use and completely non-invasive fashion.